Harvesting Energy with Hand-Crank Generators to Support Dismounted Soldier Missions

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Dismounted soldier power needs have changed significantly since fielding of the G-67B/G, a portable DC hand crank generator. A developmental hand crank system, with the potential for both military and commercial application, is under development to meet existing and emerging dismounted soldier power needs.

A comparison of this devefdental system with the currently fielded hand crank generator is presented herein to gain an understanding of the feasibility and advantages of such a device.

Hand crank generators were developed by the military to provide a source of portable field power when traditional electrical sources were unavailable. In the early 1970s, the communications-Electronics Command (CECOM) developed the 1C G-67 direct current hand crank generator which utilized permanent magnet alternator technology and a Harmonic Drive with a 100:1 step-up gear ratio to provide high rotational speeds for the alternator’s rotor.

During the late 1980s – early 1990s, the US Army Research Laboratory (ARL), developed the G-67B/G as a successor to the 1C G-67. This newer unit employed the same basic principles of operation used by its predecessor, but it also had some significant design differences.

Most notably, the G-67B/G used an 80:1 Harmonic Drive in a slightly different arrangement with the alternator. Limited production runs of the G-67B/G were completed in 1991 and 1994, and this generator is still used as part of the OP-177(V)1/U Special Operations Power Supply Kit.
Source: California Polytechnic State University
Author: Weston L. Moyers | H. Scott Coombe | Albert Hartman

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